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REVIEW: The Mühle-Glashütte 29er Chronograph

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Published on 02-10-2010 06:12 AM

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Review of the Mühle-Glashütte 29er Chronograph
By: John B. Holbrook, II

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The 29er Chronograph is part of Mühle-Glashütte's "City Line" - a line designed to be less traditional and more appealing to a younger, more contemporary fashion buyer. The 42.6mm stainless steel case of the 29er chronograph has a lot of angled surfaces with a blend of both brushed and polished finishes applied. It's a bit thicker and chunkier than some of the other dressier, more traditionally designed watches I've seen from Mühle-Glashütte, and that's a good thing. Variety is the spice of life after all. Attached to the case of the 29er Chronograph is a simple, yet tasteful leather strap, with an unpretentious tang and buckle used to fasten the strap. I found the strap to be extremely durable, comfortable, and very fitting with the design theme for this timepiece.

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Beneath the sapphire crystal of the 29er Chronograph, we find a dial that has so much appeal on both a visual and functional level. White chronograph sub-dials are set against a black dial, with polished case matching markers and hands. SuperLuminova markers can be found above the applied hour markers, and the hour and minute hands also have SuperLuminova applied. The pièce de résistance on the dial in my opinion is the bright red chronograph second hand. It really makes this watch scream "sporty and fun." I also found the black background on the date wheel to be a very nice touch, making the date window far less obtrusive without sacrificing legibility or functionality.

The case back of the 29er Chronograph reveals a sapphire crystal observation back and the wonderfully modified and decorated Valjoux 7750 inside:

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The Valjoux 7750 is a self-winding (unidirectional rotor) mechanical movement with 25 jewels, and a balance wheel which vibrates at a beat speed of 28,800 BPH. Mühle-Glashütte's does install some custom components on this movement which they manufacture, including blued screws, a custom "woodpecker" style regulator, and of course, the custom signature winding rotor.

I inquired with Mühle-Glashütte about this version of the modified Valjoux 7750 used in the 29er Chronograph and asked if it was the same version used in the Mühle-Glashütte Germanika recently reviewed by WATCHTIME Magazine. The answer I got back was that all the Valjoux movements in their watches are essentially the same - which would mean they use the same M-G modified version of the Valjoux 7750 in 29er Chronograph as the Germanika. However, if you compare the movement photographs on the 29er Chronograph to the movement photos of the Terranaut I I reviewed a few weeks ago (another watch from the Mühle-Glashütte catalog which uses a modified Valjoux 7750) , you'll see the 29er Chronograph movement does have some visible differences from the Terranaut movement - whether the differences are purely cosmetic or not, I cannot say.

All Mühle-Glashütte's movements are adjusted for accuracy in 6 positions, and always leave the factory running fast anywhere between 0 to +8 seconds per day. I ran an accuracy check on the 29er Chronograph and was yet again amazed to find the watch had near perfect accuracy according to my Orbita Mechanical Watch Tester at +1 second per day:

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The Mühle-Glashütte's 29er Chronograph is an extremely impressive, desirable piece - it succeeds in being contemporary without being "trendy." It's easy to dress up or down and has one of the cleanest, most attractive chronograph dials I've seen come along in quite some time. What really impresses me on this, as well as other Mühle-Glashütte's models I've reviewed is what they bring to the table for the price of admission. The retail price of the Mühle-Glashütte's 29er Chronograph is just $2799.00. While there's more than a few choices of mechanical chronographs under $3000.00, I can't think of any others which provides the same sort of custom modifications, finishing work, and factory regulation to the ETA manufactured movement in this watch - Mühle-Glashütte is really unique in this regard. Mühle-Glashütte is perhaps the best kept secret in Germany right now, but if you're a mechanical watch enthusiast, you need to check out Mühle-Glashütte and the 29er Chronograph.

**Photos & Text Copyright 2010 WATCH TALK FORUMS. No part of this report can be reproduced outside of WATCH TALK FORUMS without the expressed permission of John B. Holbrook, II.

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REVIEW: The Mühle-Glashütte 29er Chronograph
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